Keep Sober Cocktail

The Savoy Cocktail Book might just be the most important book ever written on the subject, and in fact, starts with the bold declaration, "Hereinafter learn all that is known about cocktails". Published in 1930 by Harry Craddock, the head bartender of the American Bar in the Savoy Hotel in London, it contains over 750 classic recipes—most of them wildly obscure now, but many that have stood the test of time. There's even a section for "Non-Alcoholic Cocktails", and although it only contains 4 cocktails, there are a couple of winners there.

One of those drinks, the Keep Sober Cocktail, is simple and delicious, calling for tonic water, grenadine, and a "Sirop-de-Citron". While there's no recipe provided for that last ingredient, we believe it was a strong lemon syrup made from both lemon peels and juice with sugar (similar to a simple syrup but without any water), and have provided our recipe in the notes below. With a couple of tweaks for better balance—the original called for too much grenadine, in our opinion—this drink is brightly bitter, tart, and just sweet enough.

We've added our alcohol-free Orange bitters to the recipe for a bit more depth and zing, and prefer this with Betty Buzz Tonic Water. Light and refreshing, Betty Buzz is a little less bitter and less sweet than your typical tonic, making it the perfect partner for the intense lemon syrup and grenadine.


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